It is easy to get discouraged when you want to do something and pain, weakness or other difficulty gets in the way. Discouragement often leads to a downward spiral of negative thoughts which will only make you feel worse. There is a biochemical response to negativity.

While it is hard to find a bright side to pain and illness, positive things do exist in the midst of that pain, and finding them can be the key to finding joy.

There is a difference between venting, which is healthy and necessary at times, and wallowing. Venting can make you feel better. Wallowing will never make you feel better. It’s like quicksand. You just go deeper and deeper into the pit the longer you stay there.

The following are some hints from people who have been there that can help you pull yourself out of the pit:

Don’t beat yourself up; it wastes energy.

Surround yourself with positive things whether you feel like it or not!  Put inspiring quotes on your refrigerator. Play upbeat music. Watch life-affirming, funny shows. Positive things make your body release healing chemicals and help you look at situations differently.

Don’t declare a whole day bad because it starts out that way. Instead of thinking in terms of “Good Days & Bad Days” think “Good Moments & Bad Moments.”

Replace “problem” in your vocabulary with “challenge.”

Do it imperfectly. A little better than it was is still better.
Plans have to change often. Instead of being overcome by frustration when you can’t do what you had hoped to do that day, learn to have a number of different options to choose depending on how you feel. You could have 5 different levels with different things listed under each. (Level 3 would be what you could do on your average day.) Depending on how well you feel at the moment, do something that fits in that level. This way,it doesn’t need to feel like wasted time or a wasted day.

Each day is a gift, and while some of them feel like gifts we’d rather return, we will be happier when we know we have put them to the best possible use.